AT • WORK
DECEMBER 15, 193©
A NEWS SHEET FOR. INDIANS
AND THE INDIAN SERVICE
OF- INDIAN -AFFAIR
1 t.c,?-?7LL( 1 99623)9
Vol. IX, No.3
INDIANS AT WORK
CONTENTS OF THE ISSUE OP DECEMBER 15, 1936.
Volume IV Number 9
Editorial John Collier 1
A Tribute to Samuel M. Brosius John Collier 5
The Drama of New World Civilization Duncan Strong 6
Early Man In America Prank Roberts Jr. . .11
A Glimpse Of The Prehistoric Southwest Emil Ha.ury 15
Prehistoric Mound Builders Frank M. Setzler . 23
Some Misconceptions About The American Indians M. W. Stirling ... 23
Restoration of An Ancient Pueblo - Kinishba C. C. Cornwall ... 34
Tonawanda Indians Get Community Center 38
Revolving Credit Fund Operations H. M. Critchfield. 39
Bridge Building On The Cheyenne River Reservation ... John J. Durkin ... 40
Rock Asphalt At Uintah & Ouray E. Morgan Pryse . . 41
Extension Of Trust Period On Indian Lands 42
Great Lakes Fish Hatchery Raises Hope For Better
Living Ben Gauthier 43
An Historic Landmark At Shoshone 45
Advice To An Iroquois Lawmaker 46
Three Indian Christmases 47
From I.E.C.W. Notes 49
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VOLUME IV - • DECEMBER IS, 193S - ♦ NUMBER 9
We came down from the Sierras to Pyramid Lake. For nearly
a thousand miles thereafter, WATER would he the master - the King,
Verily, water is destiny in this Nevada and interior California
Pyramid Lake, owned "by the Paiute Indians, is a kind of
City of Heaven, beautiful as Heaven. It is a doomed city "because
the Sierra waters have "been appropriated for irrigation. The lake's
level falls two feet each year. Salinity increases so that the fish-
life has only a few years more to go. That means more than $10,000
a year lost to the Pyramid Lake band. It means one of the splendors
of the West, destroyed.
Down southward, three hundred miles, three days later we
saw dust darkening the sky to the mountain-tops. This dust was In-
dependence Lake, blown by a slight wind. Twenty years ago steam-
boats plied on this 40-mile-long lake. Now it is nothing but a glis-
tering bowl of salts. A hundred miles north of it is dreamlike Liono
Lake. Mono is a big lake too, but Mono too must die. To an island
in Mono Lake come a million sea gulls every year. They fly right
over the highest Sierras, to nest on this far inland island. For
what tens or hundreds of thousands of years this migration has been
repeated! After five or ten years more, the gulls will perish at
And down through Owens Valley, above whose wide sweep the
snows of Mount Whitney are gleaming - tens of miles upon tens of
miles of dead orchards, dead cottonwoods and poplars, dead homes of
men. Water is fate, in all this country.
Los Angeles reaches nearly four hundred miles northward
for its water and it takes all the water. Thence northward, recla-
mation projects take it all.
I met with the Indians at Pyramid Lake, at Fallon, at
Walker River. The Owens Valley Indian spokesmen came to the Walker
River meeting. Water - water, was a part of every discussion.
But the discussions had many other burdens, too. I had
not visited the Nevada Indians since twelve years ago. Two years
under Superintendent Bowler and under the I. R. A. have brought to
Nevada's Indians a real renaissance. One of the most downcast and
directionless of Indian areas has become one of the most energetic
areas - and the Indians are "going somewhere", and they know where
they are going. Under "the shadow of the sword" - a dearth of water
and loss of water - these Paiutes, Washoes and Shoshones are re-
establishing their life.
They are getting new lands. In Owens Valley, through land
exchanges, the 800 Indians will all he placed on irrigated hold-
ings. At McDerraitt, Pyramid Lake and Walker River the hands are
successfully launched in the cattle "business. Cooperative trading
enterprise at McDermitt has added nearly 30 per cent to the real
income. Admirably worked-out credit plans are going forward at
Pyramid Lake and at McDermitt. The Walker River and Fallon Indians
have come to grips with their problem of heirship lands - which
under the I. R. A. (at Walker River), or temporarily not under it
(at Fallon), is the most baffling of all Indian economic problems.
Arts and crafts revival, and folklore revival, are sound-
ly under way, centering in the Carson School and in its arts-crafts
cooperative, now an incorporated body under the Nevada laws.
Miss Bowler and her staff have achieved decentralization
and real staff action in this immense jurisdiction. (The jurisdic-
tion is nearly 600 miles from end to end.)
But what is the master-impression from these exciting
days? It is the impression of a stupendous land (mountains and
valleys, distances and skies are all stupendous), an exquisite land,
whose spiritual quality is Indian. It is the Indians who possess
this land. There is not a mountain, not a cave, not a dim-green
or russet volcanic mound, which is not named with a name by Indians
not dead or gone, and not forgetful. Still, and hardly less than
of old, the magic might, an invisible lightning, flashes between
these Indians and their desert and its precious animals and plants.
Still they sing their obscure challenging song of how they (a peo-
ple and individuals) are like to, are one with, the desert bush
whose roots are far-clasping, deep-hidden, drought-defying, im-
mortal. These Indians need not die; they want not to die; they
are consciously striving, now, for the means to live on. They will
live on - and not merely as a blood, but as a culture and a vision.
And now, once more - water, the King. We are flying
above Boulder Dam. Can these be the yellow waters that drift from
the Navajo range into the Colorado? Blue as the lakes of the
Italian Alps, today, within its thousand delicate promontories of
colored rock, tne deep lake reaches far away to the north. And
eastward there is a haze growing rosy over the Navajos' Painted
Commissioner of Indian Affairs
The cover picture on this issue of INDIANS AT WORK was taken on
Baptiste Creek, Flathead National Forest in Montana. The photograph is by
the U. S. Forest Service.
A TRIBUTE TO SAMUEL M. BROSIUS
Fifteen years ago, at San Juan Pueolo in New Mexico,
there was handed me an unsigned document treating of thf> Pueblo
lands. The struggle over the Albert B. Fall -- Bursura bill was just
about to commence. This unsigned document stated the whole fac-
tual and legal case for the Indians; and its language was so simple,
its procession of argument so logical, that any Indian could under-
Afterward I learned that Samuel M. Brosius had surrolied
this basic statement - a statement which court rulings and legisla-
tive action of future years were to confirm.
Mr. Brosius even then was an elderly man. Thirty years
of service to Indian rights lay behind him. But fifteen years of
service were still in front of him.
It was only three months ago that I last saw Mr. Brosius.
He came to tell me of the most recent developments of the ffalapai
land case. This very complicated and important issue had been
forced by Mr. Brosius, at personal sacrifice, five years ago. As
in the Pueblo case, Mr. Brosius had been firmly based in the facts
and in the law.
Mr. Brosius served for a lifetime as counsel for the
Indian Rights Association. He built himself into the history of
Indian life. He was a good man, a brave man and always he kept a
true humility. May such as he be provided for the future: for
the cause of Indian rights will still be a battling cause, through
many years to come.
Commissioner of Indian Affairs,
THE DRAMA. OF HEW WORLD CIVILIZATION
By Duncan Strong, Anthropologist - Bureau of American Ethnology
Dated Monument Of Stela At
The Maya City Of Quirigua
Viewed as a stage, the North
and South American continents, in rela-
tion to the land masses around the north
pole, appear as a great extension of the
Asiatic continent. Anywhere from ten to
forty thousand years ago, when the great
ice sheets were receding into the north,
ancient peoples from Asia, pushed across
the narrow straits between the Asiatic
and North American continents and entered
into a vast New World unoccupied by any
other humans. These first comers were
extremely primitive hunters and fishermen
who, following food supplies consisting
of animal herds, fish and wild plants,
in the course of endless centuries even-
tually pushed their way through Central
America and into the furthest reaches of
The occupation of the New World
undoubtedly began with a few migrant hunt-
ers and continued for endless centuries.
Group after group entered from the north.
In the new and congenial environment they
increased until practically every por-
tion of the New World was occupied by
groups of these originally Mongoloid peo-
ple who, since the time of Columbus* mis-
taken identification, have been known as
Only in very recent years have
the traces of these first great migrations been found in our western plains
and along the eastern borders of the Rocky Mountains. Here archaeologists
have found, often in association with animal forms that today are extinct,
ancient stone implements which were used by that early group of New World
hunters. These remains are today known as the Eolsom culture which is dis-
cussed elsewhere in this issue. Erom the time of the Folsom hunters, at least
ten thousand years ago, to that of the "discovery" of America by Columbus, the
New World was the scene of the unfolding of a great drama of civilization en-
tirely unique from any of the higher civilizations of Asia and Europe.
Not only did these early hunters find an abundant food supply in the
great herds of caribou, bison and other animals, but they found an infinite
variety of plant forms utterly unknown in the old world. How long the ancestral
Indians remained solely as hunters and gatherers is not known but it certainly
comprised many millennia. Even today in the extreme north and in the extreme
south there are still Indians who have never passed beyond this primitive eco-
nomic stage. In the regions of Middle America, however, as population in-
creased new plants were utilized and, in the course of time, many of these came
to be artificially cared for. A new and vastly important economic step lead-
ing to agriculture has been made. It was the independent development of agri-
culture, based on unique and autochthonous plants, which started the American
Indian on the highroad of cultural progress culminating in the great civiliza-
tion of the Mayas and the Andean empire of the Incas.
The exact point of origin of native American agriculture is unknown
but there is a strong probability that it may have begun in several places at
once. The most important native American agricultural product was maize, com-
monly called corn, which seems to have originated in the highlands of Guatemala
or Mexico. In the south many varieties of potatoes were developed in the high-
lands of Peru and Colombia. In the great jungles of the Amazon, manioc, from
which cassava is made, became the staple food of the Indians. As the cultiva-
tion of native plants improved and as the idea of agriculture, along with its
products, spread from tribe to tribe
true civilization began in the New
World. It is this long and fascinating
story of the rise of the ancient em-
pires of America that the archaeologists
are now patiently unearthing in the
jungles and mountains of the American
In Central America the great-
est civilization was attained by the
Maya Indians whose numerous descend-
ants still dwell on the Peninsula of
Yucatan and in the highlands of Guate-
mala. From a simpler cultural level
based on agriculture, Mayan civiliza-
tion seems to have flowered very rapid-
ly. They built huge cities of stone
ornamented by beuatiful and intricate
carving, created exquisite works of
art in jade and pottery, and invented
a calendric system superior in accuracy
to that we use today. Not only did the
Maya invent a calendar but they re-
corded important dates in stone carvings
and these monuments today serve as one
The Temple Of The Sun At
The Maya City of Palenque
of the moat important means of unravelling the complex story of New World pre-
history. About 800 A. D. , the centers of Mayan civilization shifted from south
em Guatemala into northern Yucatan and great cities, such as Chichen Itza,
were built. The reasons for this shift are not positively known, but it is
believed that the peculiar agricultural system of the Maya, based on clearing
the jungle by fire before planting, had destroyed the forests of their origi-
nal home land and introduced grass lands into the area. Such savannas were
not productive under the agricultural methods then in use, and the dense pop-
ulation was forced to move on in search of new areas for cultivation.
The Mayas in the New World have justly been compared with the Greeks
of the Old World since they seem to have originated much of the culture which
was taken over by later peoples of Mexico and farther to the north. Never
strongly united, the great Maya cities of the north fell into civil war and
their power was broken by the advent of militaristic Toltec and Aztec warriors
from the Valley of Mexico. The Toltec and Aztec civilizations in the Valley
of Mexico were raised upon the substratum of Mayan accomplishment. It was the
great militaristic empire of the Aztec which Cortez encountered in his des-
perate and dramatic march from the sea to Tenochtitlan, today the capital of
Mexico. The Aztec, less advanced in the arts and sciences than the Maya, had
developed the science of domination and their great empire included many
tribes. It is highly probable that Cortez and his little band of desperate
men would never have been able to conquer these great warriors and empire
builders save for the circumstance that the Valley of Mexico was already rent
by civil war.
Contemporaneous with the Aztecs to the north were the Incas of Peru.
The Incas, originally a small highland tribe dominated by an able aristocratic
caste, in the course of a few centuries conquered all the western portion of
South America from Chile to Colombia. Like that of the Aztecs, Inca civiliza-
tion was based on the cultural and artistic achievements of several older civ-
ilizations centering around Lake Titacaca and the coast of Peru. One by one
the remnants of these ancient empires fell before the organized Inca invaders
and were incorporated into that great system of autocratic socialism which
characterized the Inca rule. Tolerant of local religions, the Inca insisted
only upon the worship of the sun and the use of the Quechua language. When a
province was conquered it was organized into districts under local headmen.
Sons of the local chieftains were taken to Cuzco to be initiated into the arts
and beliefs of the Incas. Should the conquered population prove rebellious
they might be removed into other parts of the empire where, among strangers,
they could do no harm. Land was allotted on the basis of families, trades
where hereditary and all products, other than those of immediate subsistence,
were regarded as the property of the state. Elaborate systems to prevent soil
erosion and to irrigate dry areas were maintained. Natural resources such as
wild, wool producing llamas were protected. Vast storehouses were built in
each district. Stone paved roads and bridges were constructed and a govern-
ment messenger service installed. Thus, messages and produce could be carried
from one end of the vast empire to the other in a few days..
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Pre-Inca Temple At Pachacamac, Peru
All power eventually centered in The Inca, head of the original auto-
cratic clan, who was regarded as the Son of the Sun. The divinity of The Inca.
was so highly regarded that The Inca married his sister in order that his heir
might have no alien "blood. A great convent or school existed for the daugh-
ters of the noMlity where in seclusion they were taught the arts of weaving,
and eventually might "be chosen as concubines for The Inca or wives for the
higher nobility. Likewise, a stern school of politics and warfare was main-
tained for the sons of the nobility. These were required to pass tests of
hardihood and skill "before they were admitted to the status of manhood. Here
again, the Spaniards were fortunate in the time of their conquest. When
Pizarro invaded the Inca empire he likewise found it in the throes of civil
war. Unlike the somewhat looser Aztec empire, that of the Incas was so cen-
tralized that when, "by a combination of boldness and political trickery,
Pizarro seized and executed The Inca, the great decapitated system fell apart.
Such in brief are a few of the later and more dramatic episodes in
the New World drama. Part of the long struggle of earliest American hunters
to attain, civilization is told in a later article. This conquest of nature
continued for thousands of years as indicated by numerous archaeological rem-
nants of the simpler civilizations in both North and South America. Two such
fascinating areas, that of the Southwestern United States and of the Mound
Building peoples of the Mississippi Valley, will be subsequently discussed by
authorities in those fields. Like the great empires of the Andes and of Cen-
tral America, these civilizations of the northern border also arose upon a com-
mon agricultural base extending from Argentina to the St. Lawrence River.
High as were the attainments of certain native populations in what is now the
United States, it must he remembered that they were overshadowed by the great
city, states and empires of Mexico, Central America and western South America.
It was in these latter regions that New World agriculture was first developed
and it was there that native American civilization reached its zenith.
When European conquerors appeared upon the scene they were superior
to the natives of the New World in methods of destruction and in some places
they destroyed more than they have ever replaced. If the Europeans had steel
and gunpowder, the natives of America had developed systems of agriculture su-
perior to those then in use in Europe and their arts and philosophical systems
while unique were infinitely complex and thoroughly adapted to the land of
their development. The European conqueror brought to the American Indian, war,
slavery, disease, and often, extermination. The American Indian gave to Europe
many of its most important present-day food crops and medicines. Northern
Europe without corn and potatoes, Africa without cassava, man the world over
without rubber and tobacco, the tropics without quinine, would today be un-
thinkable. Yet each of these essential products was developed by the American
Indian over millennia of experimentation and toil.
Thus, if there be any epilogue to this drama, it might be the rec-
ommendation that we who brought "civilization" to the American continent
think gratefully of the many contributions which the truly native Americans
have made to our own present-day life.
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Inca Walls Still In Use, Cuzco, Peru
EARLY MAS IN AMER ICA
By Frank H. H. Roberts Jr., Archaeologist,
Bureau of American Ethnology, Smithsonian Institution
Numerous finds indicating a greater antiquity for the American In-
dian than had previously "been granted have focused attention on the subject
of early man in the New World. As a result there has been a rapidly growing
interest in the question, how long has the Indian been in America? Archaeol-
ogists have been busy searching for clues and while they have several signif-
icant discoveries to their credit the problem has not yet been solved. Pres-
ent evidences only furnishes a hint of the proper answer. In a number of
places stone tools were found with the bones of extinct animals under condi-
tions suggesting that the men who ma.de the implements hunted and killed the
Digging At The Lindenmeier Site For Folsom Material
creatures. Because the animals belong to species believed to have become ex-
tinct at the end of the Ice Age, or shortly after the melting glaciers began
their northward retreat, the associations are thought to show that men were
present at the beginning of the present geologic period, if not actually at
the end of the preceding one. This evidence is augmented by finds in other
places where man-made objects were recovered from deposits that geologists
identify as representative of the same general era. Sites containing such ma-
terials are located in Minnesota, Iowa, Nebraska, Kansas, Wyoming, Oklahoma,
Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada and California.
Probably the best known examples are Gypsum Cave, Nevada, and the
various locations designated by the name Folsom. At Gypsum Cave traces of an
early group were found with remains of the giant ground sloth, the llama-like
American camel, and possibly the small native horses. Little is known of the
cultural pattern beyond the fact that the people were skilled chippers of stone
implements, were workers in wood and feathers, used sinew thread to sew skin
garments, and used several different colors to paint designs on their products.
For weapons they used a short spear and spear thrower, they did not know the
bow and arrow. Although they occasionally camped there over night they did not
use the cave as a permanent habitation. They visited it' mainly for hunting
purposes. Nothing is known of the physical characteristics of the people as
none of their skeletal remains have been found. The main significance of the
evidence here is that it shows the ancestors of some as yet unidentified
southwestern Indian group hunted animals that have long since been extinct.
The Folsom complex is characterized by an association of stone im-
plements with bison, mammoth and musk-ox bones. The bison was similar to but
much larger than the modern buffalo. The mammoth was the large hairy elephant
Split Bison Bones And Stone Implements Before Eemoval At Lindenmeier Site
which was one of the typical animals of the glacial period, yet it may have
survived for a time after the present period began. The musk-ox, also a cold
climate creature, still lives in arctic America, although many centuries have
no doubt elapsed since it roamed across southern New Mexico and was hunted by
the people living there. All that is known of the Folsom group is that it
had a great variety of stone tools, including a peculiarly fluted projectile
point which is called the Folsom point. No human remains have been found and
there is no knowledge of what the Folsom men were like. There is no evidence
for what type of shelter they may have used. On the other hand it is obvious
that they were typical hunters depending entirely upon big game for their main-
tainence. They no doubt supplemented their preponderant meat diet with wild
seeds and "greens" hut they did not cultivate their own vegetal food. That
was a development attained by much later peoples. The Folsora groups probably
did not settle long in one place but traveled wherever the animals moved. The
most important sites for the remains of this group are near Folsora, New Mexico,
the place where the original finds were made and from which the name was taken;
at the old lakes beds between Clovis and Portales, New Mexico; and at the
Lindenmeier ranch north of Ft. Collins, Colorado. Subsequent developments for
this group have not been traced, but it probably evolved into some of the later
In the region around Abilene, Texas, remains representing an early
hunting pattern approximately on a par with the Folsom have been found. Some
consider these older than Folsom while others are not in agreement on the es-
timated antiquity. Evidence for this group consists of stone hearths with
charcoal and fragmentary animal bones buried deeply, sometimes as much as 25
feet, beneath sand, clay and gravel, and stone implements in the gravel beds.
Folsom Points, Note Groove Along The Face
There are no extinct animal bones, but the deposits in which the specimens
are found are called glacial by some geologists.
Both human remains and man-made objects have been found in Minnesota
in deposits identified as glacial. Here again the evidence is for a simple
hunting culture and the people are considered representative of an early type
of Indian. Some of the specialists who have visited the sites believe them to
be quite old, others think they represent considerable antiquity although not
going back as far as the time of the glaciers.
General concensus is that North America was peopled from northeastern
Asia and that the spread was along several routes down across the continent.
Since the evidence for the early migrants shows that the first traces thus far
found are subsequent to the climax of the last glaciation there is a starting
point to help determine the time of the arrival of the first Indians. Because
some of the finds indicate that tliey were here at about the close of the gla-
cial period it seems likely that they must have traveled down along 1;he east-
ern slopes of the Rocky Mountains through an open corridor in the great ice
sheet, a corridor which is believed to have formed there about 15,000 years
ago. Hence the remains must be later. Geologists have estimated that the
Folsom deposits near Clovis are approximately 12,000 years old and that Gypsum
Cave is subsequent to them. On this basis it can be said that the Indians have
been in America from 12,000 to 13,000 years. The evidence, however, is so
meager that this must be considered only as an approximation and when much more
information is available the actual time may prove to be somewhat shorter.
Earliest Prehistoric Pottery
Basket Maker Period
A GLIMPSE OF THE PREHISTORIC SOUTHVffiST
By Emil W. Haury - Assistant Director Gila Pueblo, Globe, Arizona.
The southwestern portion of the United States can lay claim to many
things of scientific interest. This may he in its mountains and canyons, in
the varying vegetation of the hot semi-desert regions or in the cool forested
areas and in the animal life of these diverse topographic sections. Of great-
est interest to the anthropologist, the student of man, are the people who
live here now, whose characteristics are well known; those people who were
found here by the Conquistadores and who are known from their remains and
brief historic accounts; and those people whose customs and industries are
known least of all because of their great age and the lack of written accounts
concerning them. Something of the life of these earliest peoples can be re-
constructed by the archaeologist from the very meager amount of material which
time has not destroyed.
For many years expeditions from our universities and scientifically
minded institutions have been attacking this problem. They have been study-
ing the ruins of the large communal houses of the prehistoric Pueblo Indian,
the houses and burial remains in caves, the villages consisting of houses dug
into the ground and places where man camped many thousands of years ago but
left very little in the way of his handiwork behind him. By carefully piec-
ing together many bits of evidence, insignificant in themselves, gathered by
these various research projects, the archaeologists have given us a very in-
teresting but incomplete picture of the life of the true American in the South-
west before Europeans set foot on the shores of the New World. Let us turn
briefly to see what we know of some of the prehistoric people here, to mention
hastily some of their accomplishments and to arrive at some idea of their age.
Evidence is accumulating swiftly to show that man lived many thou-
sand years ago in Texas, and the southern parts of New Mexico, Arizona and
California. In those remote times man found the region considerably different
than today because of a difference in climate - a period of more moisture than
we are accustomed to today - occasioned by the recession of the last ice sheet
of the Glacial Age, The "fingerprints" of man - his stone tools - are being
found in these states under deep deposits of silt in the broad arid valleys
and in the beach materials of extinct or nearly extinct lakes. Some of these
lakes have been reduced to playas, or alkali flats, which show a thin sheet
of water only after rains. One of these lakes in southeastern Arizona, now
known as the tfillcox Playa, was approximately forty feet deep as indicated by
its old shore line. Along this shore ancient man lived, leaving the tools be-
hind him that are being found today.
These implements, whether from the lake shores or from the compacted
silt deposits which are now being laid bare by erosion, are mainly in the na-
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A Site In Southeastern Arizona flhere
Tools Of Ancient Man Have Been Pound
(The white deposit consists mainly
of clay, laid down in a pond. At
the feet of the man and under the
clays is a "bed of sand and fine grav-
el containing the man-made tools, in-
dicating that man lived here prior to
the formation of the pond which may
be not less than ten thousand years
ture of grinding tools, supplemented
"by a small number of chipped implements,
as knives and scrapers. The primary use
of these tools was, of course, the pro-
curing and the preparation of food. From
the amount of grinding stones, it is in-
ferred that some food product, possibly
the root of tule, was pulverized. It
is not necessary to believe that these
implements indicate a knowledge of agri-
culture by these people, the high antiq-
uity of the remains would argue against
such knowledge. They apparently relied
on nature to supply their food, and for
this reason they have been placed in a
food gathering stage of culture. Pot-
tery was unknown to these people. As
skeletal remains have not been found,
nothing can be said of their appearance.
The age of these people is a ge-
ological problem. The geologist tells
us that for many thousand years there
has not been a sufficient amount of
rainfall to have brought the extinct
lakes to their former high levels in-
dicated by the shore lines. The lake
that once covered the Willcox Playa is
said to have been full at about the end
and for sometime after the Glacial Peri-
od, when glaciers covered much of Canada
and many of the northern United States.
Exactly how many thousands of years ago
this was is not known, but a conserva-
tive age of ten thousand years has been
estimated for these tools, and it is not
improbable that they are much older, ol-
der in fact than Folsom Man described
in the article on page 11 .
How long these ancient food gatherers lived where their remains are
found and what changes their culture underwent, we cannot yet say.
The "Hohokam" Or Ancient Ones
Our next real evidence of early people is also found in southern New
Mexico and Arizona, but a vast change has taken place in their material pos-
sessions over those of the earlier people. These later people had dwellings
known to the archaeologist as pit houses - houses dug partially into the ground;
they made vessels of clay for cooking their foods and for storing foodstuffs
and water; they had acquired corn from a source not identified as yet and knew
well its cultivation. Although these characteristics were shared by the people
in the two states mentioned, they nevertheless differed in many other details
and for that reason they, have not been considered as belonging to the same
stock. As we know much more about the group that lived in the Gila and- Salt
River valleys of southern Arizona than the New Mexican group, let us study them
a little further.
These people are known to the archaeologist as the "Hohokam", a word
borrowed from the Pima Indians meaning the Ancient Ones. Their oldest remains
probably go back to a few centuries before the time of Christ. As time elapsed,
they gradually became more expert at making pottery and they developed their
artistic ability of painting designs on their pieces; they acquired or developed
the carving of stone and shell, as well as many other things, so that their
culture slowly became richer.
Approximately one thousand years ago the Hohokam reached a peak iD
this cultural development. Undoubtedly the height which they attained in this
direction was made possible by the fact that they were excellent and provident
farmers. Yet they lived in an environment that to. maJiy people seems harsh and
inhospitable, especially in the summer. The Hohokam learned at an early date
that if they were to mature their crops successfully means for artificial ir-
rigation must be developed. As a consequence, canals were dug which led the
water from the Gila and Salt Rivers to the fields of corn, beans, squash and
cotton. We know that as early as about 800 A. D. canal 'irrigation was in full
progress among the Hohokam. These canals were dug by hand, in some case.s as
much as sixty feet wide and six to eight feet deep. When canal irrigation was
at its height, roughly between 1200 and 1400, several hundred miles of canals
were in use. The development of these systems was one of the greatest accom-
plishments ever made by North American Indians. Only those who excavate modern
canals with powered machinery can fully appreciate the enormous expenditure of
human energy and the economic investment which the Hohokam had in their canal
systems. But without them, life in large villages .would have been impossible.
For more than a thousand years, the Hohokam habitually cremated their
dead, while practically all other Southwestern people buried their dead.
Some time after 500 A. D., if we interpret the evidence correctly,
the Hohokam began playing a peculiar kind of ball game in a court with high
earthen sides. One of these courts, which was partially excavated at Snake-
town on the Gila River Indian Reservation west of Sacaton, measured somewhat
under two hundred feet in length and ninety feet in width. At the center a
stone had been buried below the floor and "goal" stones were set into the
floor near each end of the court. This court, and others known to exist in
southern Arizona, is similar in some respects to the stone-walled ball courts
of the Maya Indians of ancient days in Yucatan and Guatemala, 1500 miles to
the south. In the game as the Maya played it, stone rings were set into the
walls vertically, well above the floor and central in relation to the length
A Hohokam House Of A Thousand Years Ago
(This house was excavated by Gila Pueblo At Snaketown west of Sacaton,
Arizona, two years ago. It was apparently used for storage, as many broken jars
were found on the floor, some of which may still be seen. Entrance to the struc-
ture was gained through the oval passage in the foreground.)
of the court. The ball, made of rubber and about the size of a baseball, was
bounced off the hips of the players, grouped in two teams, in an effort to
send it through the stone ring. Since a rubber ball has been found in a Hoh-
okam ruin of southern Arizona, dating about a thousand years ago, it is alto-
gether probable that they, too, used balls of this material in the game. It
is not necessary to assume, however, that rubber was acquired by the Hohokam
from the far south, as it might have been obtained from the Guayule plant, a
rubber bearing plant native to the Chihuahua Desert.
Another interesting and unparalleled accomplishment of the Hohokam
was the etching of shell. To achieve this, a sea shell was partially covered
with a waxy or pitchy substance in the form of a design. The shell was then
immersed in an acid, probably the fermented juice of the giant cactus fruit,
which slowly ate away the unprotected parts of the shell. Although the Hohokam
used this' method at about 1000 A. D. , the etching of metal as a method of mak-
ing pictures involving the same principles was not developed in Europe until
The Hohokam seem to have lived unmolested until about 1300, when an
immigrant group of Pueblo people from the northeast invaded their land. There
is every indication that this invasion was a peaceful one and that the two
peoples lived amicably in villages until about 1400 or 1450, when the Pueblos
withdrew. During their occupation of the Gila and Salt River valleys, such
large buildings as Casa Grande, Casa Blanca and Los Muertos were constructed.
The evidence of the immigrants is seen in their pottery, in the character of
their houses and in the fact that they buried their dead, all elements in
which they differed from the Hohokam.
There are some reasons to believe that the present Pima Indians,
living today in the area formerly occupied by the Hohokam, are their descend-
ants. If the archaeologist can eventually prove this satisfactorily, it can
be said that the Pimas have been living where they now are for at least two
T he Basket Maker s
But what was going on in northern Arizona during all this time? In
the San Juan area, at about the time of Christ, there were living a group of
people known to the archaeologists as the Basket Makers. As the name implies,
they made baskets of excellent quality. They also made many other items use-
ful in their daily life, as sandals, twined bags and robes of fur wrapped cord.
They cultivated corn and supplemented this vegetable diet with such game as
they were successful in killing. Their hunting was done with a peculiar weap-
on known a.s an atl-atl, or spear thrower, a device designed to give the arm
more leverage in hurling a spear. These people did not make pottery. Their
dead were buried in a folded position, frequently in caves with their baskets,
textiles and wooden objects. Fortunately the dry conditions of many of the
caves have carefully preserved these things for us. In appearance the Basket
Makers were quite tall - somewhat taller than the present day Pueblo Indian
and their faces and heads were long and narrow.
Before 500 A. D. , the Basket Makers began to make pottery of a primi-
tive kind and atl-atl was supplanted by the bow and arrow. About 700 a new
force arrived in the area, attributed to the appearance of a new group of
people. They were somewhat smaller than the Basket Makers; their heads were
round instead of oval and frequently deformed from contact with a hard cradle
board on which the babies were carried. The resulting mixture of Basket Makers
and the newcomers gave us what we know as the prehistoric Pueblo culture, the
descendants of which are living today in the modern pueblos of Arizona and New
From 700 A. D. on, this mixed group advanced rapidly in its material
culture. The deep pit houses, still in vogue at 700, were transformed within
a few hundred years to the large many-storied pueblos, as exemplified by Pueblo
Bonito. The kiva, a subterranean clan room inspired by the old form of pit
house, assumed prominence and has survived to the present day. Cotton was
introduced, making possible the weaving of fine textiles and excellent pottery
of many kinds was produced and as the Pueblo Indians of today, they were es-
sentially farmers. After 1000 A. D. these people built some of our largest
cliff dwellings, as those in Mesa Verde, Betatakin and Keet Seel. These were
all abandoned just before 1300 for reasons which will be explained presently ..
A Cliff Dwelling Of The Prehistoric Pueblo Culture
(This picture was taken in the Canyon Creek Euin, located on the
Port Apache Reservation. It shows but a few of the 60 rooms that once formed
this communal house. The three large beams protruding from the top of the
wall on the left support the roof of a second story room. They were cut in
the year 1343 A. D. The true ring dates for the entire village ranged between
1326 and 1348.)
Tree Ring Counts Form Basis Of Chronology Estimates
Perhaps the reader will have wondered long "before this point how
the archaeologist can speak in terms of dates in our Christian calendar as
early as 500 when we have no written records prior to the arrival of the
Spaniards in the 16th century. The ability to do this was made possible through
the studies of tree growth carried on by Dr. A. E. Douglass of the Steward Ob-
servatory, Tucson, Arizona. Dr. Douglass found that the amount of growth of
certain trees in any one year depends upon the amount of moisture the tree has
received during the winter preceding the summer growing season. Thus, in a
dry year, the growth, shown in the form of a thin layer of cells under the
bark and known as a ring, will be small; in a wet year this ring will be large.
Trees growing under the same general environment will be affected in the same
way, so that all trees growing simultaneously will register the large and small
rings in the same order. By comparing the tree ring records of growing trees,
whose rings can be dated in our calendar, with the ring records of trees cut
a century or two ago, and by further comparing these with trees cut a number
of centuries ago, it became possible to build a continuous series of records.
This chronology now extends to within a few years of the time of Christ as
each ring has an annual value.
Because wood was extensively used by southwestern people in house
building, the archaeologist can take the specimens, whether they are well-
preserved pieces from caves or the charcoal from burned houses and fit them
into the existing tree ring calendar. By this means it has become possible
to say that Pueblo Bonito was occupied in the 10th to 12th centuries and that
such ruins as Cliff Palace and Betatakin were occupied almost to 1300 A. D.
Drought Sequences Influence Population Movements
The tree ring record has also given us some rather definite notions
as to when droughts occurred in the Southwest. This knowledge is becoming in-
creasingly useful in interpreting the movements of people. We know, for ex-
ample, that in the last quarter of the 13th century, the Southwest experienced
a severe and extended dry period. From the tree ring dates we have learned
that it was during this time that all of the great cliff dwellings of the San
Juan area were abandoned. At the same time we are conscious that there was a
southward expansion of the Pueblo people that took them into the Gila Valley
where they joined the Hohokam. That the drought and these shifts in popula-
tion should have taken place simultaneously cannot be considered a mere coin-
cidence. It is probable that this same period saw the arrival of the vanguards
of the Athapascan Indians - the Navajo and Apache of today - and that their
appearance is also to be attributed directly or indirectly to the drought.
They must have been largely instrumental in driving some of the Pueblo groups
into southern Arizona. Forces of this kind the archaeologist is only now be-
ginning to understand, thanks to the great contribution of Dr. Douglass 1 tree
Let Us Cherish Our Pre-Historic Remains
To build up a history of the Indians of the Southwest, or any region,
in pre-Spanish times, it is absolutely necessary that the archaeologist has the
opportunity to examine the remains exactly as they were left centuries ago. For
that reason it is the wish of the writer that all those who may read this
article should wield their influence in preventing the exploitation of our ntins.
Much information is "being irretrievably lost "by the digging of persons whose
interests are commercial or who desire to satisfy a personal whim for amassing
a collection of ancient material without having any real interest as to its
significance. It should be borne in mind that our archaeological resources
are not limitless and that those which are left should be preserved and studied
with the greatest care.
Prehistoric Pottery Prom Pueblo Bonito, New Mexico.
PREHISTORIC MOUND BUILDERS
By Prank M. Setzler,
U. S. National Museum, Smithsonian Institution
Within the past ten years important contributions have been made to
the prehistory of the eastern United States. Additional and unsuspected data
have been gathered concerning the tribes that inhabited Florida when Ponce de
Leon discovered the peninsula in 1513. The mystery and misinformation with
which the Mound Builders have long been concealed have been measurably lessened.
Beginning with the Spanish and French penetration in the Southeast,
with the establishment of English and Dutch settlements along the Atlantic Sea-
board, European civilization soon displaced the native Indian cultures. Not
until the beginning of the 19th century did scholars suddenly realize that many
of our aborigines were rapidly losing their tribal characteristics and that we
should have no trustworthy record of their individual histories, their lan-
guages, mythology ^and tribal customs unless a determined effort was speedily
made to recover and preserve such knowledge. It has been estimated that no
fewer than 600 distinct and mutually unintelligible Indian languages were
spoken within the present United States at the time Captain John Smith was
trying to save the first English settlement in the New World, that of James-
town, Virginia, in 1607.
Through archaeology we seek to reconstruct living history; to lift
the veil of speculation from those diverse peoples who, directly or indirectly,
have contributed to our own civilization. Through archaeology we endeavor to
retrieve the history of peoples who left no written record of their own a-
The archaeological approach, of course, must lend itself to the par-
ticular condition encountered. As Indian tribes differed in language so did
they differ in their material culture. When the Pilgrim Fathers landed on
Plymouth Rock seme of the Indians were still living in the Stone Age; some were
farmers, dwelling in permanent villages whose very existence depended upon a
highly perfected form of communal agriculture; some were hunters who followed
the buffalo herds of the Great Plains. It is the story of these diverse Indian
peoples, from their arrival in the New World down to the coming of the Euro-
pean colonists, that the archaeologist tries to recover and record. Almost
from its very beginning in 1846 the Smithsonian Institution has been concerned
with this problem of aboriginal discovery and settlement the dispersal and
development into numerous Indian tribes, the creation and cultivation of dis-
tinctive plants, which form but a part of. the prehistory of the United States.
Let us review briefly the results of certain archaeological projects
recently concluded by the Smithsonian Institution. As an aid to the Govern-
merit's Civil Works Administration program to relieve the -unemployment situa-
tion during the winter of 1933-34 the Smithsonian was invited to furnish
trained archaeologists to supervise archaeological excavations in Florida,
Georgia, North Carolina, Tennessee and California. This program was one of
the most extensive ever attempted at one time in the United States.
Mound On Wolf Plains In Athens County, Ohio
In Florida three important sites were excavated. Near Bradenton, on
the west coast, a mound revealed the entire floor plan of a temple giving the
first outlines of such a Florida structure. It may have "been at such a "build-
ing that Juan Ortiz was used as a watchman during his captivity among the Cal-
usa Indians. Ortiz was the Spaniard discovered by De Soto when he landed at
Tampa Bay, May 30, 1539. This is the first mound discovered in Florida which
contained systematic cremations. In the southeast corner of the temple a
double row of posts reenforced the area, where the cremations of the "bodies
Mounds near Cocoa-Rockledge, on the east coast of Florida, revealed
"bodies of the Surruque Indians, who occupied this part of Florida when it was
discovered by the Spaniards. Menendez, the founder of St. Augustine, held a
council in 1566 at or near Cape Canaveral which was attended "by no less than
1500 of these Indians. The only knowledge of the Surruque left us "by the early
explorers of Florida is a brief catalog of repeated disasters, ending with their
final extermination slightly more than 100 years after their first contact with
Europeans. It was the purpose of the 1934 excavations to supplement these
scanty historical records.
A third site, near Belle Glade, Florida, revealed exceptional data
requiring further study "before any conclusion can he reached regarding the
possible relationship of the historic Indians with the ancient remains.
One of the most important sites examined in the Southeast was near
the city of Macon, Georgia. Extensive excavations were made in a group of
mounds overlooking the Ocmulgee River as well as in others within the city
limits of Macon. One of the most interesting discoveries disclosed was the
foundation of a circular building. This agrees in most particulars with
early descriptions of the covered ceremonial house or "hot house" of the
Creeks - such as served the Indians as a combination temple, state bouse and
men's club house. By careful work with trowels and whiskbrooms the floor of
this structure was entirely exposed. It consisted of a stiff red clay plas-
ter packed and polished by numerous moccasined feet. In the center was a
sunken fireplace and, at equal distances from this, post holes which marked
the former positions of the principal roof supports.
A most remarkable feature, and one never before observed in cere-
monial houses of the southeastern Indians, is the encircling bench on which
individual seats were modeled in clay and separated from one another by nar-
row ridges. Opposite the entrance, which opened to the southeast, was observed
the modeled head of a great bird, probably an eagle, raised somewhat to serve
perhaps as a ceremonial platform.
Near the present city of Murphy, North Carolina, a large mound was
excavated which has been identified as marking the ancient town of Guasili,
visited by Hernando De Soto in 1540. This site, at the junction of Peachtree
Creek and the Hiwassee River, was described, at the time of De Soto's visit,
as a town of 600 wooden houses, probably an exaggeration, and the capital of
a province where the hungry explorers were given a hearty welcome and feasted
upon dog meat. They caught and cooked some of the Indian dogs, to the amaze-
ment of the natives who never ate these animals. The Indians at once rounded
up 300 of the creatures and gave them to the white man to cook.
One of De Soto's men wrote: "The lord who bore the name of the
province left the capital half a league to meet the Spaniards, accompanied by
500 of the principal persons of the country, very gayly dressed after their
fashion. His lodge was upon a mound with a terrace round it, where six men
could promenade abreast." This site or mound has been definitely located,
by Dr. John R. Swanton from its peculiar geographical location and checks
with the description given by the early Spanish chroniclers who accompanied
De Soto on his long march, as that of Guasili.
Within" the Shiloh National Military Park, near Pittsburg Landing,
Tenessee, several mounds and the adjacent village sites were excavated. The
village site deposits revealed numerous house structures, and large quantities
of broken pottery vessels were found in the mounds associated with the burials.
The Great Northern Mound At
Etowah, in northern Georgia.
(380 x 330 feet at the "base and approximately 170
feet square on top, varying "between 70 and 80 feet
This famous Civil War
battle-ground will con-
tribute largely to the
reconstruction of the
who used this "beauti-
ful site, located on
the "bank of the Tenes-
see River, long "before
white man inhabited
ing descriptions brief-
ly summarize recent ar-
chaeological work in
the mound area, prima-
rily in the Southeast.
Let us now consider
some of the more wide-
spread problems con-
in the Mississippi Val-
Soon after the opening of the Ohio country the more observing pio-
neers as early as 1786 described the extensive earthworks and mounds in south-
ern Ohio. Among these early narrators can be included our illustrious Presi-
dent Thomas Jefferson. For a hundred or more years the Indian mounds through-
out the Mississippi Valley have tempted inquiring minds. In the early part
of the 19th century fantastic theories were developed in an attempt to explain
these unusual structures. When scientific investigations were begun the work-
ers were confronted with the theories that these mounds were erected by a
superior race; that they embodied the remains of the Lost Tribes of Israel or
the mythical Atlanteans. Not until the end of the 19th century, when the Bur-
eau of American Ethnology began its extensive survey of the entire mound area,
were we able to definitely establish the builders of these mounds as ancestors
of the historic Indian tribes . This was a very important step. It put an end
to speculative exploration and was the real beginning of scientific examination,,
Unquestionable evidence has been obtained through documentary sources
as well as archaeological investigations that some of the mounds were actually
built by the historic Shawnee and Cherokee. Siouxan tribes inhabiting the
southern portion of Ohio just prior to the European settlements are credited
with the building of some of the Ohio mounds. We are now in a position to say
definitely that all of the prehistoric mounds and earthworks in the Mississippi
Valley were constructed by ancestors of our American Indians.
While the empires were rising and falling in Mexico and Central
America, described in a previous paper, definite trade routes were probably
being established leading from these high cultural centers into our present
Southwest and Mississippi Valley. Even though we cannot as yet prove a direct
relationship between the prehistoric mound building cultures and the more ad-
vanced cultures in the Valley of Mexico, Central America or Peruvian highlands,
certain ideas and decorative motifs are closely paralleled.
In the Lower Mississippi Valley artificial mounds were used as founda-
tions for temple structures, while in the Upper Mississippi Valley they were
used primarily for burial purposes. From all the evidence at hand at the pres-
ent time and influenced to some extent by the actual periods of habitation ac-
curately determined in the Southwest by the recent discovery of the tree ring
chronology, we are led to believe that the entire mound building complex prob-
ably does not antedate a period roughly about 500 A. D. It may well be that
the building of mounds, both as temple foundations as well as burial structures,
originated in Mexico and spread northward.
Although the construction of temple mounds in Mexico differs, especial-
ly in covering the outsides with large cut stones or rough stones covered with
plaster, never practised in the Mississippi Valley, the actual use of artificial
mounds for temple foundations may well have spread with the dissemination of
maize or corn, which originated somewhere in the highlands of Mexico.
When the early primitive hunters living in the Mississippi Valley
came in contact with the more advanced and sedentary groups farther south,
either by migration or through trade, they adopted and perfected maize and
other indigenous plants to their own environment. At the same time the pro-
cedure of building their temple structures on artificial knolls and burying
their dead in these earth tumuli became a part of their social and religious
practices. The more sedentary life which the cultivation of plants required
and permitted made possible a more closely knit social organization which
probably flowered rapidly and resulted in the building of such outstanding
structures as Cahokia, in southern Illinois across the river from St. Louis,
Missouri; Etowah in southern Georgia; Moundville in northern Alabama; and
Kolomokee in southwestern Georgia.
Archaeological techniques have been refined to such an extent with-
in the past ten or fifteen years that we are now able to differentiate be-
tween various prehistoric mound builders, both in time and culture. Unrelated
cultures have been roughly outlined, similarities have become obvious. With-
in the past five years a definite step forward has been made in the establish-
ment of the fact that one of the outstanding cultures in the Upper Mississippi
Valley, now known as the Hopewell culture, has been found to have existed as
far south as central Louisiana. More than this, we have been able to deter-
mine that this Hopewell phase in the South is the basic prehistoric culture.
With this as a starting point, we are now gradually showing evolu-
tion and migrations of this basic culture, which enables us to determine more
accurately the prehistoric ancestors of some of our historic Indian tribes in
the south. If the present impetus for determing these prehistoric relation-
ships can be furthered, we are justified in believing that not many years
will pass before a readable and more definite reconstructed prehistory can be
written with regard to the Indians in the Mississippi Valley.
SOME MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT THE AMERICAN INDIANS
By M. W. Stirling
Chief, Bureau of American. Ethnology
It is a strange fact that practically none of our grade or high
schools and relatively few of our universities teach courses designed to give
a true picture of the history and prehistory of the American Indian. In the
case of the lower schools this is due in part to the fact that there are very
few suitable text hooks availahle. Any high school graduate has a fair idea
of the glory that was Greece or Rome, hut very few indeed have an accurate
idea for example of the equally great cultural achievements of the Maya and
the Incas, or of the advances in political organization made hy such tribes
as the Iroquois. As a result of the general inability to obtain this informa-
tion, many basic misconceptions concerning the Indian have gained a firm foot-
ing in popular tradition and have been perpetuated in many cases by improper-
ly informed writers.
Because of the fact that the American aborigines did not develop a
true system of writing, the task of reconstructing the past has of necessity
been undertaken through the researches and excavations of the archaeologist.
The quipu knot records of the ancient Peruvians, the recorded astronomical
calculations of the Maya, and the realistic picture records of personal achieve-
ments and calendar counts which were painted on skin by the Plains Indians and
others give us some small information, but none of these can in any way be in-
terpreted as historical accounts.
In discussing these points it must be borne in mind that at the time
of discovery, the New World was inhabited by hundreds of tribes with widely
differing beliefs, modes of living and degrees of culture. In speaking of a
people whose culture varied between that of the Maya on the one hand and the
Seri for example on the other, it is obvious that no general statements can
be made which will cover all cases. However, the effort has been made in this
brief account to bring out such points as are most typical.
The earliest of all the misconceptions about the Indians arose im-
mediately upon the discovery of America, when Columbus thought he had reached
the East Indies and therefore called the natives "Indians."
Early in the 16th century, when America became definitely recognized
as a separate continent, Europe began to speculate upon the probable origin
of the natives. By this date Christianity had become firmly entrenched as the
religion of Europe. In keeping with the religious spirit of the age, a solu-
tion of the problem was first sought in Hebrew tradition. As a result there
were soon circulated many publications purporting to demonstrate that the In-
dians were descendants of the "Lost Tribes of Israel." As there are certain
basic similarities in the customs of primitive peoples throughout the world,
it was an easy matter to demonstrate resemblances between the American In-
dians and the early Hebrews.
Speculation did not stop at this point, however. Energetic writers
began to see resemblances between the pyramids and temples of Central America
and Mexico and those of ancient Egypt or India. Others thought that they could
see the hands of the Phoenicians or the Greeks in some of the customs of the
Indians; in fact, most of the high civilizations of Europe, Asia and Africa
were each supposed by some writer at some time to have been the point of origin
of the Indian or of his civilization. Not content with having exhausted all
of the known culture centers of antiquity, enterprising theorists had drawn
upon mythical or assumed civilizations in order to furnish parents for our
orphan natives . The myth of Atlantis and the theory of a lost continent in
the Pacific have furnished colorful material for fanciful accounts of sup-
posed ancient migrations.
The story of tribes of "White Indians" is one of the most persistent
of the legends connected with the alleged exotic origin of the Indians. As
early as the 17th century Wefer noted the frequent existence of Albinos among
the natives of Panama, and there have been frequently occurring notices of
these people since that time. The supposed ancestors of these groups have
been variously attributed to the Norsemen, the Irish and the Welsh. Needless
to say, these stories are the result of colorful imaginations and the supposed
evidences produced invariably collapse when investigated closely.
In connection with popular ideas of this nature there might be men-
tioned the widespread belief in the past or present existence of such abnor-
malities as races of giants, pygmies or people with tails. The folk lore of
the Indians often contains stories of giants and dwarfs to which credence has
frequently been given by white hearers. In old burials unskilled observers
have sometimes mistaken the skeletons of children for those of dwa.rfs. The
fallacious idea of a race of dwarfs is most prevalent in the Pueblo region
of the Southwest. This is due partially to the finding of the mummies of
children, and partly to the frequent occurrence of miniature storage rooms
with small doorways, these having been interpreted as the dwelling places of
Never a year passes without at least one newspaper report of the
finding of the bones of an alleged giant. These finds when investigated in-
variably turn out to be the bones of large mammals, fossil or otherwise, sup-
posed by the discoverers to be human remains. In some instances actual human
remains in a burial have become separated in such a manner as to give to the
untrained observer the impression of abnormal stature. To untrained observers,
human bones for some reason usually appear much larger than they expected.
It might be said at this point without attempting to go into details
that the studies of anthropologists have demonstrated that all of the American
Indians are essentially of one generalized racial type, probably the basic
type from which the mongoloid peoples of Asia have also sprung.
There are a number of "beliefs which have long held general credence
concerning the existence of pre-Indian or non-Indian races in America. It
was "believed for a long time that the mound "builders of the Ohio and Missis-
sippi valleys and the cliff dwellers of the southwestern United States were
not only racially distinct from the historic Indians, "but possessed a civili-
zation superior to them.
These beliefs have persisted in spite of the fact that it is now
well known that many of the mounds were erected during historic times, and
their functions described by early travelers. Many of the mounds when ex-
cavated contain numerous articles of European manufacture. The skeletons
and artifacts found in the pre-Columbian mounds show that their builders were
Indians with a culture differing in no material degree from their proto-his-
The pueblo dwellings erected on the cliffs in the arid Southwest
were in no way distinct from other pueblo dwellings. Pueblos were built on
the cliffs at a time the inhabitants were in fear of attack from invading
enemies. The cliff dwellings were inhabited simultaneously with many other
southwestern villages throughout virtually the entire period of occupancy of
this region. We now know from the growth of tree rings in wooden beams found
in the structures the exact years in which they were erected. Most of the
principal cliff dwellings were erected in the 13th and 14th centuries.
Probably no misunderstanding brought about as much ill feeling and
bloodshed between the Indians and whites as the difference in concept con-
cerning the ownership of land. The land within the tribal boundaries typical-
ly belonged to the tribe as such. Neither the individual nor the family pos-
sessed vested rights in land although each family might appropriate for pur-
poses of cultivation as much as they required of any unoccupied land within
the tribal boundaries.
It was therefore impossible for any chief, family or any section
of a tribe legally to sell or give away any part of the tribal holdings.
Naturally any documents or purchases of this nature had no meaning to the
early Indians. The first settlers seemed never to have learned this fact.
Regardless of any negotiations carried on by individuals, the Indians of
course considered themselves ousted when the whites took possession of their
The religious beliefs and philosophies of the Indian have been but
little understood by the layman. Descriptions by Europeans were almost in-
variably made in the familiar terminology of the Christian religion and in-
terpretations were strongly influenced by the particular religious training
of the European observer. Attempts to explain Indian religion by any sort
of comparison with the so-called monotheistic religions of the Old World are
bound to fail.
Such familiar terms as "Great Spirit" and "Happy Hunting Grounds"
were coined by Europeans in attempting to explain Christian concepts to the
Indian. The conception of a ruling all powerful deity is a political analogy
applied to supernatural powers which could be conceived only "by a people aware
of permanent centralized power, such as existed typically only in the Old World.
Such groups as the Incas and the Natchez looked upon an individual theocratic
head as the human representative of the sun and his authority was of a religi-
ous rather than of a political nature.
Generally far removed from any such centralization of religious ideas
was the Indian belief in a multitude of spirits whose abode was to be found
in nature and in both animate and inanimate objects. His rituals and offerings
were given with the idea of propitiating these spirits. Behind all this was
the somewhat mystic conception of an impersonal supernatural force which per-
meates all nature and animates all phenomena which control the destiny of man;
the Iroquois describe this by the term Orenda, the Algonquian, Manito and the
The Indian in no way mixed his ethics with his religion. Moral prin-
ciples of good or evil were not a characteristic of his deities, as his reli-
gion was a practical one. Consequently ideas of reward or punishment after
death or any such spirit abodes as a happy hunting ground or an Indian hell
were equally foreign to his conceptions until the idea became implanted in
some instances by missionaries. Dreams or artificially induced visions, where-
in he frequently saw and spoke with individuals known to be dead was ample
proof to the Indian of the existence of a soul and an after life. Offerings
placed with the dead. were a manifestation of this belief. The souls of the
dead, however, were typically feared and usually magical measures were under-
taken to prevent their return.
There is a widely prevalent belief among many whites that there is
a single general Indian language and that it is a primitive sort of speech,
inadequate to express ideas fully, and which, to be understood, must be helped
out by gestures. As a matter of fact the diversity and complexity of Indian
languages is amazing. With no written literature to stabilize them, languages
differentiate with great rapidity. There are among the tribes north of Mexico
approximately fifty totally unrelated linguistic stocks. and well over 600 di-
alects which are unintelligible one to another. Contrary to the prevalent
notion, the vocabularies are rich and their grammatical structure intricate
and systematic. Without exception these languages are capable of accurately
expressing the most abstract ideas.
One of the greatest of absurdities was the application of terms of
royalty to the Indians by Europeans. It is perhaps natural that the first
explorers, accustomed to Eur opearis' 1 ideas of regal descent and individual po-
litical power, should apply such terms as "king" and "queen" and "princess" to
members of the simply organized democratic village tribes of America. The idea
of a legal executive head (entirely foreign to the Indians) was fostered by
the colonists because of the aid it gave in the transaction of business, par-
ticularly in regard to sale of land, which as has been already indicated, could
not be done by tribal dealings.
The idea of inherited rank was for the most part foreign to the na-
tive concept. Even the so-called chief among many tribes was recognized as
leader only "because of his personal exploits or a generally recognized ability.
Such a leader had no actual authority, his role "being purely advisory.
In some tribes, such as the Iroquois, and some pueblo tribes, cer-
tain chieftaincies were always selected from a particular clan. While there
were hereditary chieftaincies among various other groups, as a matter of prac-
tice such offices were usually elective. It is possible that the political
system of the Iroquois influenced the democratic style of government of the
United States. Probably the only example in North America of a power anal-
ogous to that of a despot was to be found among the Natchez and neighboring
tribes of the lower Mississippi. Even in this instance submission to the
will of the chief was probably for the most part voluntary and based on reli-
Ideas of caste were as a rule lacking entirely. On the northwest
coast of America something like a caste distinction arose based on property
holdings and among the Natchez a caste system developed, based on heredity.
The idea of individual wealth is not at all characteristic of the Indian.
It is very generally believed that there are many "lost arts" in
connection with Indian civilizations. Among these might be listed the belief
that Indian doctors had knowledge of certain specific medicines, usually of
a vegetable nature, that were particularly potent, and that the "secret" of
these is now only in the possession of an occasional old person or has been
entirely lost. This idea received a great deal of stimulation during the
halcyon days of patent medicine, when Indian remedies were much in vogue.
As a matter of fact the Indian believed most sickness to be caused
by the activity of evil spirits which could be removed only by sorcery. There-
fore the priest was the physician and treatment consisted in frightening or
luring away these spirits. In many tribes there was a crude knowledge of the
therapeutic use of certain plants, but even in these instances their applica-
tion was deeply rooted in magic. The sweathouse which operated somewhat on
the principle of a turkish bath was in general use among the Indians, but its
use could scarcely be termed a curative measure.
It has come to be very generally believed that the Indians had a
method of tempering copper. None of the American Indians knew how to reduce
ores. In North America, native copper was treated as a malleable stone and
no process of tempering other than by hammering was ever employed. In Middle
America and Peru a few copper alloys are found, some of which constitute true
bronze. Whether these alloys were natural or whether tin was intentionally
added to native copper is not certainly known.
Another series of mistaken beliefs exists in connection with the
native art of flaking stone. By many it is thought this is now a lost art,
and that when the art was in use, great patience was required to complete an
arrowhead or flint knife.
The actual method employed was a pressure process by means of which
chips are successively removed by means of a hone or wooden awl shaped tool.
Any Boy Scout should he able to complete a perfectly formed arrowhead of flint
or obsidian in ten or fifteen minutes. It is quite impossible to shape stone
by heating it and dropping cold water on it, despite the wide prevalence of
It is likewise thought by many that the Indians had knowledge of
complex mechanical principles and devices which were used in erecting some of
the large mounds or in moving the large stones such as are found in some of
the Middle American and Peruvian ruins. As a matter of fact the only force
employed in this work was man power, and the only mechanical aids, the prob-
able use of log rollers and attached lines to which the man power could be
The above misconceptions relate for the most part to attributes mis-
takenly credited to the Indian which were in advance of his real knowledge or
abilities. This list could be almost indefinitely extended, and it could be
paralleled by another list in which the actual facts show the Indian to be
far in advance of the popular conceptions.
The Indian was much behind his European successors in such matters
as the control of natural forces and principles, although his observation
and knowledge of the organic life of his environment was surprisingly full and
accurate. Virtually every Indian was a born zoologist and botanist and keen
observer of nature. The depth and beauty of his philosophy and religion has
been but little understood by the white man. As an artist, poet, orator and
dramatist, he has never been exceeded.
It is unfortunate that a general knowledge of these facts comes at
a time when in most regions of North America the Indian himself has almost
forgotten the old customs and the old beliefs. It is a curious fact that the
generations to come ^vill have a clearer perspective and understanding of the
aboriginal Indian than did most of his white contemporaries.
4 s 4* 4* 4*
RESTORATION OP AN ANCIENT PUEBLO - KINISHBA
An I.E.C.W. Project On The White Mountain Apache Indian Reservation
By Claude C. Cornwall, Camp Supervisor
(With acknowledgement to Dr. Byron Cummings,
University of Arizona, Department of Archaeology)
Pour miles west of old Fort Apache is
the village of Kinishba. Now this Kinishba is
not a village in the ordinary sense, because no
one has lived there for hundreds of years. But
its identity is clearly marked and its progress
toward restoration is a moving drama of inter-
est. Its stories are being told in the historic
records left by a vanished people who, during
the twelfth and thirteenth centuries lived and
moved and had their being at this important
trading center. When this Pueblo was at the
height of its development there were about 700
rooms in the two sections. Whether they were
all used at one time is not certain, but a con-
servative estimate would indicate that not few-
er than a thousand people had their homes in
Who Lived At Kinishba ?
They were a peaceful people , indus-
trious and home-loving. Their dry farms in the
surrounding valley produced corn, beans and
squash and this food supply was augmented with
deer, antelope, wild turkey and the wild fruits
and berries which were hunted in the adjoining
mountains. Their clothing was spun and woven
from wild cotton and fibres of the yucca, or fashioned from the skins of the
animals which they used for food. Outstanding among their many accomplish-
ments was the art of pottery. Bowls were fashioned in different sizes, shapes
and colors. Red- bowls decorated with designs in black were probably most fre-
quently used, but they also made white pottery which was decorated in black.
Three-color ware was perhaps their triumph in pottery, in which they combined
red, black and white in a variety of ways. They made ollas or storage jars
of a rich red, large cooking pots of dark red or grey. The beauty of the de-
signs they painted on the pieces, the quality of the paste used and the fir-
ing all indicate their superiority as workmen and artists.
Dean Byron Cummings
Kinishba pueblo was a sandstone and clay structure, the large rocks
being set in regular courses and then chinked in with smaller rocks and mud.
It is built on two sides of a large arroyo, and in one section alone there
were fully 150 ground floor rooms "built around two rectangular natios measur-
ing approximately 50 by 60 feet. While these people were skillful builders,
it is interesting to note that they did not understand how to break joints in
masonry work, but piled the large stones in direct vertical layers.
Restoration Be gun By University of Arizona
How has all this information been obtained? Well, a part of it,
(and according to Dr. Byron Cummings of the University of Arizona, a most im-
portant part) has come about as a direct result of E.C.W. activity on the
Fort Apache Indian Reservation. Each summer the University of Arizona ar-
chaeological department conducts a school on the site of this ancient ruin.
As a requirement of their course, the students have been doing work on res-
toration and conservation of the pueblo and its interesting contents. This
"location" school has made possible an opportunity for professional instruc-
tion of very great value, available to the Apaches on terms which they could
not have duplicated at all, if they ha,d sought it through regular educational
channels. Faculty, students and laboratory have come together and set up a
University archaeological department right in their own back yard.
Aoache E.C.W . Crew Joins In
The Apaches had never understood these
ruins; have never known much about them. As a
result, valuable archaeological materials were
being lost or destroyed, and these libraries of
ancient culture were being dissipated, largely
because the people did not know or appreciate
It was this educational opportunity
which largely prompted the desire to set up an
I.E.C.W. project at Kinishba. Here is an area.
of which the maximum utilization will eventually
be its conservation as a. public monument. It
has already been visited by hundreds of neople
who have learned and have been inspired, as they
have viewed the historic panorama that is being
Twenty-one enrollees and one skilled
workman make up the Aoache crew which has been
specially selected for this assignment. The
objective has been two-fold; one to get the
Portion of Ancient Wall
Portion of Kinishba Pueblo, Being Restored
work accomplished, the
other to provide by this
contact an appreciation
of the worth of archaeo-
logical findings and the
value of preserving such
materials when they are
Ruin 8 Rich In "Finds"
are being effectively
reached. The Indian young
men are fascinated with
the work. Each new dis-
covery has found them as much interested as the University students. During
this season just closed, 30 rooms have been excavated, the whole east wall
of the pueblo uncovered and 40 rooms have been restored. These excavations
have yielded a rich suoply of matter - pottery, shells, bones, fabrics.
One interesting find was a string of tiny black and red stone beads.
There were more than 3,300 of them, and they measured nine feet in length.
They were strung in a regular pattern, red and black alternating, with the
beads graduated as to size. Interspersed were tiny shell beads, and in the
center was a small turquoise pendant.
Among other finds this summer was a necklace of wampum and olavilla
shells and another of spiral sea shells. Another ornament discovered was a
small eagle, carved from stone. But the discoveries which have yielded fun-
damental facts are the human and animal bones, pottery containing seeds and
food supplies, fabrics, and the remaining parts of the pueblo structure it-
self, preserved intact for centuries under the pile of debris and earth which
covers it. Already a change of attitude is filtering through the Apache com-
munities, and the ruins, of which there are several others on the reservation,
are being more intelligently regarded.
Restoration Follows Long-Range Plan
Dr. Cummings plans that the restoration shall be left in three
stages. The west side of the arroyo is to remain in much the same condition
as the whole ruin appeared when first discovered. It then was only a large
mound from which one could pick up pieces of broken pottery, sherds of vari-
ously colored shattered cooking pots, ollas and bowls - the non-perishable
artifacts which once served as the life tools of an ancient culture.
On the east bank of the arroyo the plan is to restore the south
half of the pueblo as nearly as possible to its original state. The north
section, which is now being uncovered, will be left in its excavated state,
so that visitors may see three stages of archaeological study.
Project 1016-2, as it is officially recorded in the Fort Apache
E.C.W. program, has gone forward under unusual supervision. It is interest-
ing to pick up a copy of Form 8, the "Weekly Progress Reoort" and note that
it is signed toy Byron Cummings as "acting foreman", and contains such state-
ments under title, "(N) Narrative Report" as follows:
"Began restoration of five rooms and excavation of two rooms dur-
ing the week. Finished the restoration of one room, except for the roof."
Indians Are Leaders
The E.C.W. enrollee group works always under direct supervision of
an Indian leader. Ira Declay and David Kane have shared this responsibility
at different times. These Apache youngsters are toecoming archaeologists in
their own right and can tell you pretty much the story of the ruin as it has
been revealed thus far.
Dr. Cummings is highly pleased with his Indian crew, and while
there are smiles at his assignment as "Foreman", he takes his E.C.W. resuon-
sitoility mighty seriously. He says that under the present arrangement they
have toeen atole to accomplish as much work in one season as they were able to
do previously in four years.
Students And Indians Join
students have made pleas-
ant contacts with the A-
paches. This summer they
joined with the Apaches
in the Fourth of July cel-
etoration at Whiteriver and
gave freely of their tal-
ent in the program of en-
tertainment. Taken all in
all, the Kinishtoa project
is important in many ways,
and is leading to a clearer understanding, not only of the culture of an an-
cient and vanished race, tout also of life as it is.
Restored Rooms at Southwest Corner
TONAWANDA INDIANS OF NEW YORK GET COMMUNITY CENTER
The Dedication Ceremony
Ground was "broken
at 2:00 p. m. on November 16
by Tonawanda Indians , by Mrs .
Franklin Doctor and "by Mrs.
Hanover Spring, for the Com-
munity and Comic il House to
be built for the Indians of
the Tonawanda Reservation in
New York. The building, which
is to be an educational and
health center is the first of
its kind provided for a New
York State reservation. It
was erected by the Federal
Government at a cost of ap-
proximately $35,000. In it,
there will be an auditorium,
gymnasium, meeting room for
the chief's council, health
showers, recreation room, library, club rooms, museum, study and
room for Seneca group singing. The studio will house the Arts and
Project under the supervision of the Rochester Museum of Arts arid Sci-
Mrs. Walter Henricks of Penn Yan was the moving individual force
behind this successful undertaking. It was also through her untiring efforts
that favorable action was taken by the New York State legislature in passing
the maintenance appropriation bill which allows $3,000 annually for the sup-
port of the building. The entire project will be under the jurisdiction of
the state department of social welfare, with provision made for a resident
director, assistant director and janitor.
In accordance with the Federal Government Indian treaties, the In-
dians purchased public land on which the community house is being erected and
then leased it to the state for ninety-nine years.
The lines of the cypress log building follow the pattern of the
Iroquois Long House enclosed by a log fence simulating the old Indian stock-
ade. The interior of the building will be adorned with Indian murals, carv-
ings, water colors, etchings, oils, ceremonial masks and other examples of
Indian art. Federal Arts under Mrs. Audrey McMahon plans a huge curtain for
the stage which will depict Indian history and to be done by a Tonawanda In-
dian artist. Under this same project group, it is hoped, the planting of the
grounds will be carried out.
REVOLVING- CREDIT FUND OPERATIONS
By H. M. Critchf ield, Supervisor of Credit
The Indian credit system authorized "by the Indian Reorganization Act
is now beginning to function. Up to December 1 a total of nineteen tribes had
ratified charters and of these, eleven tribes had submitted applications total-
ing $670,000. Those requesting loans were:
Lower Brule Rocky Boy's
Of the remaining eight tribes now eligible to make applications, two
tribes, Swinomish and Western Shoshone, have indicated that they do not intend
to submit applications at present. Applications for the following six tribes
are now in process of preparation:
Omaha Red Cliff
Flandreau Pyramid Lake
Tongue River Fort McDermitt
The credit system is following closely upon completion of the organi-
In all cases economic development programs have accompanied the appli-
cations showing plans for economic improvement, how credit will be used to as-
sist in such improvement, and how the credit activities will be conducted. Ap-
plications received from the chartered corporations to date indicate that the
tribes realize the advantages to be gained through sound credit operation and
their responsibility in connection with this development. The corporation of-
ficers seem to realize that the goal of economic security cannot be reached
over night and that they must build soundly, with 'credit as the motive power.
The plans provide mainly for the development of the live stock and farming
The use of funds for productive purpose is being stressed. The need
for housing and other permanent improvement is great, but the tribal officials
seem to feel that if the production side can be set into motion more efficient-
ly, that eventually improvement may be expected along other lines, and that
unless funds are invested in productive enterprises the "revolving" feature
will be defeated, which must not be allowed to happen.
The requests for assistance which the credit agents are receiving
from organized trices show definite thinking along sound credit lines. Re-
ports indicate a marked interest in the cooperative movement, and a desire to
proceed on a sound basis, starting conservatively and increasing the size of
their enterprises as they gain experience. Development of tribal enterprises
is also receiving careful consideration.
A business-like credit system is a new thing in the Indian Service
and one of the most encouraging signs is the realization by the corporation
officers that they must proceed cautiously until they have acquired more ex-
perience along credit lines. They seem to fully recognize that the revolving
fund presents opportunities to them which have heretofore been lacking, and
intend to do their utmost to help it succeed. The opportunity is there - it
is up to them to make the most of it. The Credit Section stands ready to as-
sist them in any way possible. In all instances the tribes are requiring de-
finite plans from their borrowers to show exactly how the funds are to be used,
and are proceeding carefully in all their operations. Two things which they
are emphasizing most are: First, loans for productive purposes. Second,
loans must be repaid and the borrowers' plans must show how repayments can be
BRIDGE BUILDING ON TEE CHEYENNE RIVER RESERVATION IN SOUTH DAKOTA
By John J. Durkin, Junior Road Engineer
Moreau River Bridge
Cheyenne River Reservation, South Dakota
were included in the road
program on the Cheyenne
River Reservation. The
largest of these is the
Moreau River Bridge, east
of Promise, South Dakota.
This is a 170-foot bridge
made up of a 90-foot main
span end two 40-foot side
spans. The concrete a-
butments and piers are
supported on niles. The
roadway is 18 feet wide
and 27-| feet above low
Lack of machinery taxed the ingenuity of the Indian bridge crew,
but they overcame all difficulties. The crew did spend several anxious min-
utes when a cable holding one of the 90-foot girders snapped under the nine-
ROCK ASPHALT AT UINTAH AND OURAY IN UTAH
By E. Morgan Pryse, Director of Highways
Valuable rock asphalt, suitable for paving purposes, has been dis-
covered on the Uintah and Ouray Reservation in Utah. Perhaps it would be
better to say, rediscovered, since the Army people used this native asphalt
many years ago to pave the streets and roads around old Fort Duchesne. Pre-
liminary investigations indicate that this asphalt exists in great quantities.
The beds near White Rocks are three hundred feet in width; at least that in
height, and outcroppings indicate that they probably extend thirty miles un-
der the Uintah range of mountains at a general elevation of some two thousand
feet above sea level. Streets paved in Salt Lake City and Vernal with this
asphalt as long as seventeen years ago show little difference in condition
from streets paved with it during the past year. Tests made by the Utah High-
way Commission indicate that this rock asphalt will withstand a pressure of
three hundred pounds per square inch, or approximately three times the pressure
of oil roads. Sections of Highway No. 40, which crosses the Uintah and Ouray
Reservation, is being paved with this native material.
The state is processing this asphalt by merely grinding it up so
that the material will pass through a one-quarter inch screen. This is done
in order to insure an even spread of the material to a thickness of one and
one-half inches on the road. When rolled and completed, the paving is one
and one-quarter inches in thickness. The state is using approximately seven
hundred tons of the rock asphalt to the mile. The asphalt in its native form
runs as high a.s twenty-two per cent to crude oil and asphaltum. To secure
about eleven per cent moisture the low grade asphalt is mixed with the high
grade when running it through the crusher and grinders.
A further study will be made to determine the feasibility of mining
and shipping this asphalt to other reservations for paving streets around the
agencies, hospitals and the more important roads. Aside from a crusher, most
of the equipment required in mining and processing is already on hand at Uintah
Asphalt may be described as a semi-solid, sticky residue formed by
the partial evaporation or distillation of certain petroleuns. This is as
true of native asphalts as those obtained by refining petroleums. Only the
native asphalts were known to the ancients, but late in the nineteenth century
it was found that asphalt was a constituent of certain petroleums and could
be recovered from them by distilling off the volatile oils which held it in
solution. About eighty per cent of the world's asphalt is produced from pe-
troleum refineries. Sandstone and limestone, commonly known as rock asphalt,
is found in various parts of the world; in the United States it is found in
Texas, Oklahoma., Alabama, Kentucky and Utah. The largest and best known de-
posits of relatively nure asphalt occur as an asphalt or pitch lake on the
Island of Trinidad, British West Indies. An especially pure asphalt of very
brittle material known as gilsonite, i s a lso found on the Uintah & Ouray
Reservation and in Colorado.
Practically all native asphalt is too hard for direct use and must
be heated until water, gas and other volatile materials are driven off and
then fluxed or softened to the desired constituency by mixing with the proper
amount of residual petroleum. On the other hand, asphalt recovered by distil-
lation does not require f luxation as the process is stopped when the produc-
tion reaches the desired constituency.
EXTENSION OF TRUST PERIOD ON INDIAN LANDS
By Executive order of September 30, 1936, the period of trust ap-
plying to any Indian lands, whether of a tribal or individual status, upon
which the trust period was due to expire December 31, 1936, or at any time
during the calendar year 1937, was extended for a further period of 25 years.
This order applies to lands on at least 18 different reservations. The 25-
year period of extension, instead of the 10-year extension that has been
granted annually for some time, is in line with the desires of the Indians
and the policy of the present administration to hold Indian trust lands under
There are approximately 120 Indian reservations throughout the
United Sta.tes upon which allotments of land have been made. Many of the al-
lotments are covered by patents which provided that the lands belonging to the
Indians should be retained under trust for a period of twenty-five years,
subject to extension at the discretion of the President. Some reservations
contain thousands of allottees whose individual trust holdings, in some cases,
embrace as much as one thousand acres.
Extension of the trust periods began about 1909 and such extensions
have been for from one to twenty-five years. It was formerly the practice to
obtain separate extension orders for each reservation when the trust period
was about to terminate but in recent years blanket extension orders similar
to the recent one have been made.
Some of the lands affected by the President's recent order are those
belonging to the Eastern Shawnees, Absentee Shawnees, Citizen Pottawatomies,
Ottawas, Senecas, ^fyandottes, Cheyenne and Arapahoes, Oklahoma; some of the
Mission Indians of California; those of the Colville Reservation, Washington,
and Indian lands of Fort Lapwai, Idaho.
GREAT LAEES AGENCY FISH HATCHERY RAISES HOPES FOR BETTER LIVING
By Ben C. Gauthier - I.E.C.W. Project Manager
One hundred and twenty lakes lie within the boundaries of the Lac
Du Flambeau Reservation. Included is the Flambeau chain of nine lakes con-
nected by thoroughfares which are navigable for small boats. The Big Bear
River, also known as the Flambeau, has its source from this chain of lakes
and winds its way in a westerly direction across the reservation.
In the past sporting magazines frequently contained articles de-
scribing the reservation, the Indians and the excellent bass, pike and musk-
alonge fishing. Without a doubt the part of the Bear River known as "Lazy
Bend" on the Lac Du Flambeau Reservation, has had some of the best "muskie"
fishing in the country.
At one time the Indian agency maintained and operated a pike hatch-
ery which was highly successful, hatching fifteen million pike fry each sea-
son. Since the hatchery has not operated for some time the lakes have been
gradually depleted of their abundant supply of fish and are sadly in need of
Now a new hatchery is being built. It will be capable of producing
annually fifty million pike fry and approximately two million muskalonge fry.
These fry will be placed in the waters of the Lac Du Flambeau, Lac Courte
Oreilles and the Bad River Reservations.
With the passing of the lumbering era, which provided employment
for most of the inhabitants of this region, it is evident that the major
source of employment during the summer months must continue to come from
vacationists' needs. Restocking our lakes from the fish hatchery now under
construction will attract more tourists. These sportsmen need Indian- guides.
Also, more vacationists will mean a larger sale of Indian handicrafts.
No wonder that this project is being received with enthusiasm by
all residents on these reservations.
Crowheart Butte on Big Wind River
Shoshone Reservation, Wyoming
AN HISTORIC LANDMARK AT SHOSHONE
At the top of the opposite page is a picture of Crowheart Butte.
In March, 1866, a tattle was fought in this vicinity "between Shoshone and
Bannock Indians on one side and Arapahoes, G-ros Ventres and Cheyennes on the
other. The name was given to this butte by the whites, under a misconception
that it was in this battle that "Washakie", Chief of the Shoshones displayed
the heart of a Crow Indian chief, whom he had killed, on the point of his
lance at a war dance after the tattle.
It was at a fight near the Kinnear crossing of Big Wind River that
the episode alluded to occurred, forty miles away. The Shoshones call this
"butte "Bad Medicine Butte" from the following occurrence:
A Shoshone warrior ascended this "butte at sunrise one morning to
scan the country for Arapahoes, who were said to "be looking for a fight with
the Shoshones. Not having returned "by sundown, his friends became alarmed
and started a search for him. He was found dead on the top of the butte ly-
ing with his head on his arms, without a wound, evidently a victim of light-
ning or heart disease. Hence the name "Bad Medicine" or "Bad Luck" butte.
No full-blood Shoshone will ascend this butte for any consideration.
On the left is a picture of Coza Nakota, said to be the only sur-
viving eye-witness of the bloody Crowheart Butte fight. She was shot through
the hip and consequently has remained a lifetime cripple. She states that
she was thrown from her horse during the fight and witnessed the death and
wounding of many of her tribesmen. It was from this old woman that the true
history of the fight was obtained.
ADVICE TO AN IROQUOIS LAWMAKER
There is much in the Constitution of the Iroquois Confederacy
(known to "be in force in 1570 and believed by some students to have been
adopted many years earlier), that we prize today in the Constitution of the
United States. In this constitution were embodied the principles of initi-
ative, referendum, recall, and the ideal of a constitutional federal democ-
racy in which all men of good will and honor - and women as well - might
Below is a passage(l) from that constitution, as it has been
"talked into" wampum and handed down from generation to generation. The
nobly-phrased translation is that of A. C. Parker, Director of the Rochester
Museum of Arts and Sciences, and himself a member of the Seneca Tribe
It is the exhortation to an Iroquois lawmaker on taking his place
at the Council Fire, to enable him to fulfill his pledge to "... live ac-
cording to the constitution of the Great Peace and exercise justice in all
affairs." It is advice by which any lawmaker among any people and in any
age might well be guided.
"... You shall now become a mentor of the people of the Five Na-
tions. The thickness of your skin shall be seven spans - which is to say
that you shall be proof against anger, offensive actions and criticism. Your
heart shall be filled with peace and good will and your mind filled with a
yearning for the welfare of the people of the Confederacy. With endless
patience you shall carry out your duty and your firmness shall be tempered
with tenderness for your people. Neither anger nor fury shall find lodge-
ment in your mind and all your words and actions shall be marked with calm
deliberation. In all of your deliberations in the Confederate Council, in
your efforts at law making, in all your official acts, self-interest shall
be cast into oblivion. Cast not over your shoulder behind you the warnings
of the nephews and nieces should they chide you for any error or wrong you
may do, but return to the way of the Great Law which is -just and right. Look
and listen for the welfare of the whole people and have always in view not
only the present but also the coming generation's, even those whose faces are
yet beneath the surface of the ground - the unborn of the future Nation."
(1) A. C. Parker: "Constitution of the Five Nations" (1916); Sec. 28.
THREE INDIAN CHRISTMASES
Th e Christmas Season At Turtle Mountain in North Dakota
The old French and Indian spirit of Christmas begins at Christmas
Eve with midnight mass. After the services are over we all begin to greet
our friends. Then we hurry to get home to the little ones and do our part
with Santa Clause.
We are awakened in the morning very early, by the sounds of little
bugles, trumpets, drums and all sorts of merrymaking toys. The little chil-
dren with their mouths filled with candy and laughter make us all happy and
we wish all the world a Merry Christmas.
Our custom is for the older people to remain at home to await the
visits of their children. The parents of the wife are visited first. On ar-
riving at the home of her parents early New Year's morning, the woman kneels
in front of her father who gives her absolution and a blessing for the coming
year. She then arises and he greets her, "A Happy New Year!", and kisses her.
Greetings are then exchanged all around, wraps are taken off and all sit down
at the table. Home-made drinks of some kind are usually served before eating.
Sometimes old French songs are sung.
The main dishes for this celebration are "bullettes", which are meat
balls made of hamburger or other ground meat, onions, salt, pepper and flour
mixed together and boiled. Then there is a special kind of cake or pudding
called, "La Puchine", which is made of flour, raisins, brown sugar, nutmeg,
cloves, soda and milk stirred together. This mixture is poured into a pre-
pared linen bag, which is sewed up at the end, put into a kettle of boiling
water and boiled for one and one-half hours.
We choose a certain home in which to meet at night for a merry old-
time dance. We have the old-time quadrilles, French four, double jig and all
that goes with old times. By Joe Trothier and Pete Marcellais . From " Chippew a"
Christmas At Isleta Pueblo In New Mexico
The night before Christmas every Indian adobe house is beautifully
decorated with lighted candles all around the roof of the house.
They start the ceremony with Indian dances at the old Mission church.
This is followed by a midnight mass. The Indian dances start about nine
o'clock. Two different clans of dancers, six pairs in each clan, take turns
in performing. All through the four following days about the same kind of
dances are held at the plaza, both morning and afternoon.
The costume of the women is the regulation pueblo dress of bla.ck,
fastened to the right shoulder. Each wears a scarf of bright-colored silk,
tied about the neck. They wear many silver bracelets, necklaces and rings.
Each wears white buckskin moccasins, with knee length, wrapped leggings. In
both hands they carry eagle feathers. The men dancers are naked to the waist.
Their bodies are streaked with fine wavy white lines and a white spot in cheek.
Each man carries a gourd rattle in his right hand. He carries a highly deco-
rated bow with many feathers. Below the knee are garters of sleigh bells. Moc-
casins of dark red leather complete the men's costume.
About ten men in a circle do the singing while a tom-tom keeps the
dancers in perfect time. From the "Sandpainter" Albuquerque Boarding School .
Albuquerque, New Mexico.
A Nava.jo Christmas
The Navajo don't celebrate Christmas like the white people do. One
or two days before Christmas they start going to where their children are at-
tending school or to a trading post near where they live. They usually go on
horseback, in wagons, trucks and automobiles.
On Christmas Eve they go to the program. When the program is over
they receive some presents just as we do at school; especially the ones that
have small children and babies. The white people like to give little children
and babies gifts.
On Christma.s morning they go to church when the schoolchildren go.
They all enjoy Christmas dinner together. Everybody has lots to eat. After
dinner, if the weather isn't bad, they have foot races, horse races and other
kinds of games. Sometimes they have a chicken pull, or a Ye"i-bi-chai dance,
if they want to.
The ones that live far away start going beck to their home after
dinner or a little later. Some of them stay for the races and dances. They
all go home with the gifts they received. By C. B. From Teouayo - Santa Fe
School , New Mexico.
FROM I.E.C.W. REPORTS
A Good Word For I.E.C.W . From
Great Lakes ( Wisconsin ) I have "been
in this camp over twenty-one months
and dare say it is the best place I
have ever worked since I have been
out for myself .
I have learned how to do many
different types of work since being
enrollefl here, where I would not
have learned if it had not been for
the I.E.O.W. I hope this organiza-
tion will continue to do its great
work, as I know it will, in the fu-
We are now in the midst of tree
planting and everyone seems to be
breaking records in accomplishment
in this district as far as tree
planting is concerned. A.E. Rehberg .
Various Reports From Osage ( Ok -
lahoma ) We started to work on this
pond, and have had fairly good luck
as it was my first one. The only
trouble we had was getting down to
clay for the core. It began to look
like all the clay had turned to rock
but we finally got down to it so we
are making good time now. Claire
Bellieu , Assistant Leader .
We have had fairly good luck on
this project. We were rained out
three days and had some trouble get-
ting large rocks out of the core. A
few cold days, but everyone seemed
to enjoy it after such a hot summer.
We will complete this project soon.
Ben Burnett , Leader .
The regular I.E.C.W. meeting
was held at the Osage Agency with an
attendance of about 100. Fred Ahrberg
gave an interesting talk on duties of
a Farm Agent and relation of I.E.C.W.
to his work. James P. Lawyer gave a
good talk on irrigation, and Acting
Superintendent C. L. Ellis praised the
boys on the quality of work so far
completed by I.E.C.W. Dr. Wyrick
gave a short talk on injuries and
health. Following the meeting coffee
and doughnuts were served.
Basket ball practice has started
with a turnout of 12 men and more will
turn out for it as soon as first aid
classes are completed. William F.
Excavation of Drainage Canal At
New York . Ideal working conditions
enabled our crew to complete very good
percentage this week. Many yards of
dirt are now being moved away from
the ditches and all the stone which
was blasted out last winter is also
The water from the recent heavy
rains is well taken care of by the
ditch. Some of the men have been
working in water knee-deep. Joseph
F. Tarbell .
Snowstorm At Pierre School
( South Dakota ) Our first storm of
the season arrived and it made it
necessary for us to start working on
our check dam and get it in shape
for spring floods due to heavy snows
on the hills.
We had a number of yards of dirt
to put on the top and center of the
fills so as to drive the water to
our spillway. We also had to "build
a snowplow to "break the roads so
as to travel to and from our differ-
ent projects. It looks as though we
are going to have one of the old-
fashioned winters with lots of snow.
We need the moisture. S. J. Wood .
Fence Ren air At Colorado River
( Arizona ) Started to work on the
"Moon Mountain Pasture", repairing
old fence and constructing new fence.
This pasture will be used to hold
cattle, that have been gathered in
This week we repaired 950 rods
of fence . Lute Wilson .
Truck Trail Construction At
Ya kima ( Washington ) There has been
a considerable amount of work done
this week. The grader crew has been
smoothing the trail down and it is
ready to be used from the Big Muddy
on through to the bridge across the
Klickatat River. The compressor
crew is drilling and blasting on the
west side of the Big Muddy.
The caterpillar is pushing
stumps out of the right-of-way near
the boundary of the reservation and
is having a tough time of it in
places. Charles Hilbun.
Various Projects Being Conducted
At Winnebago ( Nebraska ) During the
past week tree planting on Soil Con-
servation dams has been completed at
Repair work has progressed very
rapidly on the Omaha Reservation,
partially due to the excellent
weather conditions and partly due to
the keen interest shown by the men
on this project.
The work of clearing trees went
along rapidly this week due to the
fact that an old trail was followed
which needed only the side slopes
grubbed; the trail then followed a
ridge the rest of the way which was
sparsely timbered. The grading unit
has caught up with the clearing and
this project will be finished this
week. Norman P. Lessor , Foreman .
Post Cutting At Hopi ( Arizona )
A record cut of slightly over 1,200
posts this week completes the post
cutting program. Every effort was
made to complete the cutting this
week and get the posts stacked near
some main road before snow flies. As
the cutting was high on the mountain
and in thick timber, a heavy snow
would have closed this area to trucks.
Rivalry was keen among the enrol lees
swinging the axes, and a daily score
board was kept showing the high man.
Hostien G-onnie Be gay with a high score
of 49 posts held the championship with-
out question. The cutters far out-
worked the teams so that it will be
necessary for two teams to return and
haul for three days next week.
The fencing crew is still en-
countering difficulties in the bad-
lands of the Painted Desert, but are
making good headway despite the rough
going. Absence of roads and trails
mpJce delivery of material hard. The
"Cat" will be tied up for repairs and
servicing until Wednesday of next week,
when it will resume work with the drag
and small grader on the main trails
and then snake in some more posts.
Ellsworth W. Nichols .
Water Development At Fcrt Totten
( North Dakota ) Eight wells have been
bored and casing placed to date. One
well was completed this week with the
boring machine . We had to go down
77 feet through slate, stone, .gravel,
before we struck water. One well
was dug and casing placed during. the
week. A second dug well was started
this week and nearly completed.
Four wells were repaired this week
Two miles of grading and one
fill have been completed to date.
Brushing was completed and stones re-
moved from roadbed, •£ mile ahead of
grader. All surveying was completed.
Frost and snow have not hindered us,
but stone above and below surface has
taken considerable time and man power.
C. A. Hubel .
Praises for I.E.C.W . From Navajo
(New Mexico ) How nice it is for
I.E.C.W. to build reservoirs for the
Navajo and the springs so that horses,
cattle and sheep can have plenty of
water to drink. How nice it is for
I.E.C.W. to fence the reservoir to
protect it for many years, and the
Navajo knows just where to go for
their water, and we Navajo say thank
you to I.E.C.W. Archie Atcitty .
Well Digging At Standing Rock
( North Dakota ) We finished Well No.
5, cased it, and it is now ready for
The crew moved to Well No. 2 to
re-dig at lea.st 8 feet more in order
to get good water. The work has been
slowing up because of the cold days,
but we are doing the best work we can.
Edmund Many deeds , Assistant Leader .
Various Projects At Eastern
Cherokee ( North Carolina ) Work this
week has been on the Washington Creek
truck trail and the fire trails.
Rain on Thursday prevented work in
the field, so the time was spent in
repair to tools and equipment at the
garage. Jarre t Bly the .
We started a new horse trail
this week. Had a small crew working
on some cribbing on Project 65. The
trail builder is on the last part of
the truck trail. There is a cliff
of rock to go around which is very
bad and will take a day to get around
for the last stretch. Roy Bradley .
Completion Of Project At Tulalip
( Washington) This week has seen the
completion of one of our major proj-
ects at this jurisdiction and the be-
ginning of another.
The truck trail, the project just
completed, has been under construction
for about two years.
The project on which work has
just commenced is the Lumrai Dike proj-
ect and is situated about 75 miles
from headquarters. Theodore Lozeau .
Sodding At Cheyenne and Ara.naho
( Oklahoma ) Work on sodding was pushed
all possible this week in order to get
all the sod in that we could and have
it growing and set good before the
cold weather sets in. It looks as if
winter will be in this part of the
country pretty soon. The men worked
good. Daji Black Horse .
Work On Truck Trail At Couer d '
Alene ( Idaho ) The work on the truck
trail was comple ted the middle of the
week. That makes the trail so a per-
son can travel on it during the win-
ter, instead of it being cut up and
full of ruts. We also started a horse
trail on one of the reserves. This
reserve needed a trail as it has no
road. It will help the people in many
ways . Austin Corbett .
SMITHSONIAN INSTITUTION LIBRARIES
3 9088 01625 0219